Collage T. Staudt
T. Staudt, born in 1972, repro retouch graphic photographer, media designer and printing engineer. He lived in Hamburg and London before working as a visual artist in Berlin. His style is influenced by his work as a DJ in London's club scene as well as his interest in the broad gamut of pop art. For his work he uses a range of different media.
His main means of expression comprise of painting, photography and the uses of eclectic collages using collected pieces of print media.
He describes his main aim as to redefine urban life. In his work this is represented by putatively random clippings of urban flotsam, which he impressively recombines by way of collages into abstract and new shapes.
As part of this process Staudt disconnects established contexts and causal relationships. This is visually achieved by way of tearing, obscuring and alteration by way of over/re-painting. As a result he creates new realities and contents.
It is important for the artist to create his works employing traditional manual techniques rather with than the computer.
This results in images of lively and complexity.
(T. Velmachos © 2010)
Art info press text
Unusual perspectives and minimalist colour composition: T. Staudt's pictures are not aimed to affect the beholder immediately but seek to create a process of visual contemplation. The Berlin based artist uses photographic techniques as well as graphic styles to create a bold connex between classic painting, photography and graphic design. As part of this process the photographic camera serves as a creative and conserving device which captures individual and realistic moments of every day life. As a result of the fusion of these images with pasted, already published images hailing from popular culture the artist creates an intriguing mixture of reality and fiction which charges the picture with urban symbols. T. Staudt creates his works using classic painting methods involving canvases and paint brushes rather than computers. The jungle of icons and images which characterise his works are therefore much more than just a chain for references.
His work rather is based on the spontaneous effect of the paintbrush therby creating an emotional dimension which opens new perspectives and charges the pictures with emotional energy.
(M. Leuffen - Köln - © 2007)
Staudt on its own work
We live in a world dominated by images and are constantly confronted with billboards, inundated by flyers, signs, screens and other visual media.
All these visual stimuli taken together define a large and significant part of the environment we as a society live in.
By way of disassembling and newly combining this visually influenced part of our lives - reflecting my daily impressions, feelings and my personal experience - I create new perspectives; art becomes an object for sale, no longer a concert or a product as it was.
I add these pictures to my concepts shaped by my every day dreams , or traumatisations and shifted realities.
The result is contemporary art, which are colorful, including parts of print technologys as screen and offset print (outlines, Points, positives to negatives aspects), graphical accents like black brush strokes, typeface and plain fields.
Technically the works become paintings, and are therefore itself always unique, with a personnel note.
(T. Staudt © 2010)
On T. Staudt's work
'Thus he found familiar things everywhere, albeit mysteriously mixed and paired, and thus peculiar things often created their own order, unique him.
Soon he noticed the interconnection in everything. Soon he did not see anything by itself.' (Novalis - Friedrich v. Hardenberg)
The use of multitude of techniques, materials and visual methods is the characteristic feature of Staudt s work. He uses materials as divise (as spray paint, acrylic, marker and printing ink), different styles (as Pop, Graffiti, informel), the media he chooses includes photography, digital as well as drawing and to paint.
In his works he creates a fascinating dialogue between these different dimensions.
Such dialogue is characterised by thoughtful and often surprising arrangements. This is achieved by graphic 'symbols', spontaneous visual gestures, graffiti 'quotations', long brushstrokes interrupted and contrasted by broken lines, liquid and vivid as well as soft and strong structures, effective use of coloraccents in the context of black and white structures, shapes which float between abstract and desciptive and disintegration and condensation.
His profound knowledge of various printing techniques and the corresponding possibilities of digital manipulation enable Staudt to experiment an almost wide level,
which he uses to employ new processes, photo, painting and techniques of printing pre- and re works.
His methods to reconcile the heterogenius nature of his works include layering, phasing, overlapping, overpainting, wiping over of shapes and motives.
As a result reality appears in his works as a reproduced and medialised form which is his reflected in his tangible motives.
In the succesors of Pop Art reflecting the ´reality ´created by mass media, consumerism and the banal and mondane reality of every day life.
Industrial and urban motives, street scenes and cars are therefore characteristic motives.
These disparant visual fragments of reality which reflect the synchronicity and non-synchronicity. of a globalized and media dictated lifes are arrogant using the methods of collages. Further more the visual methods mentioned above enhance the pression of fragmentation and thereby make the beholder recently aware of the vunlerability of reality.
Staudt s works time and time again revolve around the discourse of painting, drawing and printing techniques, i.e. suround the dualism of unique and reproduction.
Walter Benjamin instigated the devise of arts aura of unique mass and authenticity which was directly linked to the handwriting of the artist. In his famous essay 'Art in the age of technical reproduction, 1936', in todays world this topic is more relevant than ever.
T. Staudt: 'The increased role computers influence our perception through their use of graphical methods (video, games, internet, design), the more do i feel an urge to use my own hands to until individuality to apinture and blur digital traces. As a result a painting or an analogue photo is a unique piece of art and erase any. The end result is a dualism of classical craftsmanship and digital techniques (digitalscans/computer/digitalprints).'
Such dualism between computer and canvas, between individual handwriting and anonymised visual reproduction becomes obvious by the search for neutralisation of contradictions and equalisation, in his works.
At the same time there is a strong sense of intention to create orientation and authenticity in a reality which is consists of disparate, multilayered fragments, collages which appear to 'mystically mixed' (Novalis).
People see the world in glossy magazines which they are prevented from seeing by celebrities (Siegfried Krakauer 'Die Fotografie'). It is in such sense that Staudts works invite the beholder to reflect in various and suspenseful ways.
(Eva Schöning - Bochum - © 2006)
Anti Art / Pop Art / Assemblage / Collage
Born in the seventies in Bochum, Germany, he started his painting work at a very young age in the eighties. The big and powerful brushstrokes of 'Henna Schliekers' oil on canvas following the techniques of classic expressionism inspired the young artist. He was in particular fascinated by the painting process itself. Consequently his early works are characterised by expressionist brush and paint exercises. As part of this experimental phase he developed a feel and basic understanding for materials and techniques and their corresponding visual effects. Using various types of paint and surfaces such as lacquers, wall paints on wood, glass or wallpaper he created intriguing and innovative pieces. These early experiences still have a significant influence on Staudt's work today.
Being a qualified lithographer T. Staudt has an intimate knowledge of photographic techniques as well as of various aspects of the printing process. He artictic approach is deeply rooted in the world of commercial art and graphic design and he consciously employs his technical skills for his artistic work. His paintings, however, represent a clear continuation and enhancement and [often criticism] of conventional graphic design such as advertising.
Inspired by his studies of technologies in printing at the 'BUGH' - University of Wuppertal and further studies in media design in London and Berlin he started to base his work on materials sourced from printing companies. Such materials would include for instance printing ink combining them with classical painting, collages and experimental photography.
Staudt uses photography as a means to capture ideas and artistic concepts. As a result many of his works are based on photographic images which in the process of his artistic work may either be fully or partly incorporated in his paintings. The sources of his motives are, however, not confined to photographs taken by the artist himself but also include materials taken from printed publications. By way of emulating familiar shapes and pictures he creates a common reference point between the artist and the beholder. His work is marked by a clear acknowledgement of the importance, influence and effects of mass media. Like the various contents conveyed and manipulated by mass media the contents of a painting are deliberately and critically 'manipulated' by the artist. This process is based on the belief that iconographic elements, once removed from their original context, may be freely developed, modified and put into different contexts.
His creative work process is marked by a technical enhancement of the underlying images which form the starting point of every piece. Once identified the underlying materials are developed using digital rendering and retouching techniques. Albeit the artist uses existing and often well known underlying motives his work is ultimately aimed at creating something new and unique. It is not intended to create copies of the underlying motives. Employing complex photographic and lithographic techniques Staudt's paintings are marked by an intriguing use of changes and shifts in relative proportions and visual angles. It is his declared aim to capture visual motives of our every day life and depict them in a unique, timeless and enhanced context. The varying and often unusual relative dimensions of objects depicted in his paintings highlight and define interdependencies between different elements and create unique visual impressions.
His work bears strong references to the urban environment he lives in; this is reflected by the use of urban images. The colour white the artist uses as the base colour of his works resembles the white of paper. At the same time, however, the colour white gives rise to the question whether a painting is a 'finished piece' or whether it is still in the process of evolving. It is precisely the ambivalence in relation to the status of the painting which pays homage to printing theory where the colour white is either defined as a void space, ie unprinted surface or alternatively as surface printed white.
Staudt's painting process is characterised by two distinct features:
(1) The act of creating pictures. The final picture in its function as an aesthetic composition is a journal of the single steps involved in the painting process including in particular the choice of motives. The role of the beholder is to observe and contemplate and thus create a new, personal and subjective piece of art.
(2) The picture itself creates the impression to be in a transient state between 'finished' and 'unfinished'. The painting process stops and all brushes and other tools are put to rest as soon as the picture i) is aesthetically complete and ii) has reached a level of 'expressive intensity' which satisfies the intentions of the artist. Once a picture has reached such a state of completion any additional amendment or modification would constitute an irreversible act of change and would make it impossible to re-create the initial state and the corresponding statement the picture originally conveyed.
The composition of the pictures reflects the principles of 'Remembering, Recognizing and Predicting'.
The artist defines remembering as a form of perception, which involves merging situations and events, as well as collecting and selecting pictures and printed images. He sees the process of creating a picture as an act of craftsmanship involving the selection of the constituent elements, the retouching of those images, the simplification of motives as well as more practical aspects such as the priming of the canvas.
The paintings condense complex contexts to a small number of expressive elements. Recognizing these elements means acknowledging and appreciating the relevance of the fundamental concepts of time and life which accompanies the pictures throughout their genesis.
Looking at all situations, motives and images collated in the picture the principle of predicting comes into play. The artist wants to experience directly how a picture evolves. Predicting is a stage in the creative process which involves imagining all scenarios and images used as underlying motives for the painting prior to its completion. It is the artist’s approach to comprehend every single step of the process in order to be able to make clear artistic statements. Simplification and adaptation are key to create a new piece of art.
The large scales bestow upon the objects an enhanced sense of identity. As a result an object may convey lyrical forces.
Scale decreases aesthetic distance.
Turning figurative motives into abstractive motives.
Even mundane, realistic and descriptive images can be converted into abstract solutions.
(M. Weber - London - © 2005)